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(NOT TOO LATE) SCRIPTURE - HEB. 9:27                                                            JUNE, 1995

IT IS APPOINTED UNTO MAN, ONCE TO DIE, BUT AFTER THIS, THE JUDGMENT

SUBJECT - IT'S NOT TOO LATE

Take notice to this. It will help you to understand something that few people, take the time to understand. And that is, man is only here for a little while, compared to eternity, and then he dies (James 4:14). All of the efforts to find out how to live longer, are fruitless. Sooner or later, you, just like me, will die. No man can stop it. That is what God told Adam, when He warned him what would happen, if he ate the fruit from the forbidden tree (Gen. 2:17). NOTE: IT WASN'T AN APPLE !! God, had originally intended for man to live for eternity, but he, Adam, blew it. No ladies, it wasn't Eve's fault, even though she shares in some of the blame. But, the punishment of death came about, because of what Adam did (Gen. 3:17-19, Rom. 5:12). Therefore, it was appointed unto man, to die, because of his disobedience. Also notice this. It says, man is to die, once. That means that there is no such thing as, your being alive in another life. This is the only life you will ever have, as far as being flesh and blood is concerned, so you need to make the best of it. For it is what you do, in this life, that will determine what will happen to you, after this life is ended. If you blow it, that's too bad. Why? Because, the verse says, 'after you die, then there is the judgment.' And, this is what I want to focus on, this month.

There is a saying, that is very popular among us, as it pertains to Heaven and hell. It goes like this, 'Heaven and hell, are here on earth.' That saying, is flawed. If you are going to say anything, it should be, 'you prepare for Heaven or hell, here on earth.' That's right. As long as you are alive, every thing you say, every thing you do, every thing you think, puts you on a path, that will lead you either to Heaven or hell. That choice, is totally up to you.

Many people today, think that the total accumulation of what they have done over their entire lives, makes the end result. You know, if they have done more good, than bad, then they will get into Heaven. If they have done more bad than good, then they will go to hell. Many times, we get in the habit of saying something like this, 'that person has done so much evil, that they will never get into Heaven.' When we do this, many times, that person, feeling that no matter what they do, they will never make it to Heaven, begins to pursue a course of self destruction, simply to have as much of a good time as they can, while they are still alive. Look at our young people today. They have little hope of living past 25 or so, according to statistics on the life expectancy of today's youth, especially, our black youth. So, they go about life, with reckless abandon. 'If it feels good, do it.' Trying to get all of the best that life has to offer, into their short lives. They have to have a lot of money, fancy cars, a nice woman, and even a child. They don't think about saving any money. They spend every dime they get. Getting a good education, is out of the question. All because, they have no hope of living to be old. They just don't care.

Let's look at the gay community, for a minute. If ever there were a group of people, that see their situation as hopeless, it is the gay community. The message that many of them have been getting, is that they are going to go to hell, no matter what they do. There is no way for them to come to God. Therefore, they pursue their lifestyle with total, reckless, and even suicidal abandon. AIDS, is wiping them out, at a far higher rate, than in the heterosexual community. At last count, 85% of all the AIDS cases recorded in this country, are attributed to the homosexuals. Yet, they only make up about 6% of the population. Despite all the warnings about engaging in protective sex, (this type, God calls, abominable (Lev. 18:22, 20:13), they don't care, and do it, without protection. They rebel against any thing, that has the smell, of God, in it. That includes the Church, Christians, the Bible, and morality. Some, have actually started their own churches, where they preach that God made them the way they are, and that it is those that preach against their lifestyle, that are wrong. They perform weddings, they have forced the courts, to allow them to adopt children. On and on it goes. Why? Because they feel shut out, from God. This is due, in large part, because some Christians, have made them feel like this. Yet, even in the midst of all this, God has His hand out, to them. It is not too late for any of them to come to Him, and be forgiven. If He, will do this for them, He can do it for you. Jesus can save you, no matter how far down into sin, He has to reach to bring you out. (Heb. 7:25)

That is what this message is all about. Regardless of how long, or how many sins you have committed, as long as you are alive, it is not too late for you to be redeemed. There is no amount of sins, that can't be forgiven, except one, and that is blasphemy against the Holy Ghost. And to commit that, you quite literally, have to be one that knows the ways of God, and then attack the Holy Spirit, by attributing His works, as being of the devil. All other things, can be forgiven, if only you will realize your wrong doing, and repent. To show you just how far God will go to save you, think about this for a moment. The person or persons, responsible for the bombing in Oklahoma City, that killed so many people, including children, and has wrecked untold hundreds or thousands of lives, can still make it to Heaven, if only they will repent, and ask Jesus to come into their lives.

You see, the Bible says, 'God is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.' Repentance, is what it is all about. And that repentance, must be done, before you die. There is no chance of doing it, after you die, and find out, every thing we have said about God, is true. It is just like working one week, and getting paid the next week. You put in your hours for one week, and the next week, you get paid for those hours. You can't work 25 hours one week, and on payday the following week, tell the paymaster, to give you 40 hours pay, can you? You have to do what is necessary, to get a 40 hour check, during that particular week. Once that week is over, you will only get, what you have on record. NOTE: Even though I am using work as an example, you can't work your way into Heaven. It's just like a person, walking into a big department store, and seeing things laying all over the floor, that should be on the shelves, and picking them up, and putting them where they belong. Now, just because they did something that the employees of that store should be doing, doesn't mean that they can go to the manager of that store, and expect to get paid for doing it. If they weren't hired by the store to do that work, then the store, owes them nothing. The same thing holds true for people that think they can work their way into Heaven. The only way you get into Heaven, is that you must be saved (born again). After that, then, your works will determine how many rewards, or crowns you will be presented with, when you stand before Christ. But, it all starts with being saved. Anyone can be saved. No matter how evil they may be. The apostle Paul, who says this of himself, ' Christ came to save sinners, of whom, I AM CHIEF.[1Tim 1:15]' What he is saying, is that he was the worst there was. And what did God do to him? Only made him, the greatest apostle to the Gentiles. Took him from the guttermost, and raised him to the uttermost. Took him out of the valley of sin, and put him on the mountain of righteousness. He can do the same for you.

As far as where you have to go, to get saved, you can do it right now, right where you are. All you have to do is say, "JESUS, I AM A SINNER, AND I AM SORRY FOR MY SINFUL WAYS. COME INTO MY HEART, AND CLEANSE ME FROM ALL MY SIN, AND BE LORD OF MY LIFE. I ACCEPT YOU AS LORD AND SAVIOR, AND WITH YOUR HELP, I WILL LIVE MY LIFE FOR YOU. I BELIEVE THAT YOU DIED ON THE CROSS FOR MY SINS, AND WAS RAISED FROM THE DEAD, FOR MY JUSTIFICATION." If you prayed that prayer, from the heart, meaning every word, congratulations, you are now saved. The next thing you need to do, is start learning about what God wants you to begin doing. Among these things, is get water baptized, in the name of Jesus as a symbolic act of the remission of your sins. Also, seek he baptism of the Holy Spirit, which will be the evidence of God's power, being given to you, as recorded in the book of Acts, chapter 2.

NEXT MONTH'S MESSAGE - AND ALONG CAME JESUS!!!

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